Eggnog Panna Cotta Tart
If there was only one kind of Christmas dish everyone liked, it would definitely be Eggnog Panna Cotta Tart.
- ALMOND PASTRY
- 350g plain flour
- 55g caster sugar (1/4 cup)
- 60g almond meal
- A pinch of salt
- 200g unsalted butter, cubed
- 2 egg yolks
- ½ tsp vanilla paste
- 40ml water, chilled (2 tbsp or so)
- A couple of pieces of white chocolate.
- EGGNOG PANNA COTTA
- 3 leaves gold strength gelatin (or 1¼ tsp powdered gelatin)
- 125ml milk (1/2 cup)
- 70g brown sugar (5 tbsp)
- 500ml heavy cream (2 cups)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 whole nutmeg, finely grated
- 60 - 100ml liquor of choice (such as brandy), to taste
- TO DECORATE
- 1 cup cherries, some whole some halved and pitted
- A handful of pistachios, roasted and chopped
- Icing (powdered) sugar, for dusting
- ALMOND PASTRY AND COOKIES
- Put the flour, sugar, salt, almond meal and butter into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or in a food processor) and mix on a low speed until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
- Add the egg yolks, vanilla and the cold water while the mixer is still running. Continue to mix until a dough forms. Shape into a disco, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours.
- When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 180 C (350 F). Grease a 10" tart shell with removable base and line a cookie tray with baking paper. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow it to soften slightly.
- Roll out the disc on a floured surface until it is about 3mm (1/8 inch) thick, and large enough to line the tart tin. Roll the pastry up onto your rolling pin and roll it out into the prepared tart shell, easing it into the base and sides. Trim off the excess pastry and refrigerate the tart shell till firm.
- Gather the leftover dough together and roll out again. Use a Christmas cookie cutter to cut out the shapes of your choice, and place on the lined tray. Refrigerate.
- Blind bake the tart shell. Line the shell with a sheet of baking paper and fill with rice, beans or baking beads. Bake for 25 - 35 minutes, until the pastry is golden. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Once cool, remove the baking beans and baking paper.
- Meanwhile, bake the tray of cookies for 12 - 15 minutes, until puffed and golden. Allow the cookies to cool and set aside.
- Melt the white chocolate gently over a bain marie or in the microwave. Use a gloved hand or pastry brush to paint an very thin layer of white chocolate inside the base and sides of the baked tart shell. Refrigerate.
- EGGNOG PANNA COTTA
- To make the panna cotta, fill a medium bowl with cold water and place the gelatin leaves inside to bloom (soften). If you're using powdered gelatin, pour 2½ tbsp water into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over it. Allow this to stand and absorb.
- Pour the milk and sugar into a saucepan and stir until the sugar dissolves.
- Add the cream and salt and put the saucepan over a low heat.
- Cook until it is just under the boil (when bubbles start to appear around the edges).
- Remove the pan from the heat. Squeeze the gelatin leaves to remove the excess water and add to the cream mixture, stirring until the leaves dissolve. If you're using powdered gelatin, add the mixture and gently whisk it in until it dissolves. Add the grated nutmeg and liquor and stir to combine.
- Set the mixture aside to cool down for an hour or so, then pour it into the tart shell.
- Refrigerate until set, at least four hours, preferably overnight.
- TO DECORATE
- Arrange the cookies and cherries around the outer edge of the tart, Dust with icing sugar and sprinkle with the chopped pistachios.
- Keep refrigerated. Serves 8 - 10.
- Happy baking!